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Mary Wept Over the Feet of Jesus by Chester…
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Mary Wept Over the Feet of Jesus

by Chester Brown

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828229,363 (3.8)None
The iconoclastic and bestselling cartoonist of Paying for It: A comic-strip memoir about being a john and Louis Riel returns and with a polemical interpretation of the Bible that will be one of the most controversial and talked-about graphic novels of 2016. Mary Wept Over the Feet of Jesus is the retelling in comics form of nine biblical stories that present Chester Brown's fascinating and startling thesis about biblical representations of prostitution. Brown weaves a connecting line between Bathsheba, Ruth, Rahab, Tamar, Mary of Bethany, and the Virgin Mother. He reassesses the Christian moral code by examining the cultural implications of the Bible's representations of sex work. Mary Wept Over the Feet of Jesus is a fitting follow-up to Brown's sui generis graphic memoir Paying for It, which was reviewed twice in The New York Times and hailed by sex workers for Brown's advocacy for the decriminalization and normalization of prostitution. Brown approaches the Bible as he did the life of Louis Riel, making these stories compellingly readable and utterly pertinent to a modern audience. In classic Chester Brown fashion, he provides extensive handwritten endnotes that delve into the biblical lore that informs Mary Wept Over the Feet of Jesus.… (more)

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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Got to meet Chester and get a signed copy of this book at a library conference.

This is a great little story that builds on the unusual genealogy of Jesus. Brown's interpretation of this is a bit of a stretch but entertaining and worth a read to anyone who likes controversial material or biblical criticism.

For those who are not privy to the world of biblical criticism: 'feet' can sometimes be a euphemism for 'penis'.

Happy reading. ( )
  Jaron_TheBookBaron | Apr 26, 2019 |
Mind. Blown. Interesting take on prostitution and it's role in the Bible. The best part may be the prose bits. It's a completely different view of well-known, and very familiar to me, stories with a previously unrecognized potential thread. Would be interesting to read a feminist response to this. Someone write it! ( )
  ktshpd | Oct 22, 2018 |
A collection of graphical stories from the Bible, with the common thread that they show more acceptance of prostitution and female sexual agency than is the modern Christian norm. There are stories of Ruth, Rahab, Bathsheba, as well as Job and Cain and Abel. Accompanying notes explore suggestions by Biblical scholars that early Christians and Jesus himself had a much more positive view of prostitutes and prostitution than later New Testament writers such as Paul. ( )
  questbird | Oct 9, 2018 |
Chester Brown has a long history of adapting bible stories and frequenting prostitutes. In this volume he combines his two passions, using bible stories to help rationalize his sexual activity. He's not the first guy to justify his actions through bible studies, but he may be the first to get a moderately entertaining graphic novel out of the effort. I may not buy it all, but his interpretations are certainly thought provoking. ( )
  villemezbrown | Jul 28, 2018 |
You'll never look at "feet" in the Bible the same way ever again.

This was a sometimes interesting interpretation of the Bible as a "secret history," where references to an acceptance of prostitution in the Ancient World and to the possible illegitimate ancestry of Jesus are portrayed through a series of Biblical stories and parables drawn as a graphic novel. The Afterword, Notes, Acknowledgements and Bibliography take up about 1/3rd of the book (i.e. it requires 33% of the book to explain what the other 66% is about).

Chester Brown's graphic stories are not necessarily exactly the Biblical versions that you may have read previously. They have been tweaked with interpretations and variations as drawn from Biblical Apocrypha with a particular favourite being "The Gospel of the Nazarene" which some scholars consider a pre-censored version of "The Gospel of Matthew."

Brown credits esp. Jane Schaberg's "The Illegitimacy of Jesus: A Feminist Theological Interpretation of the Infancy Narratives", Yaram Hazony's "The Philosophy of Hebrew Scripture: An Introduction" and John Dominic Crossan's "The Power of Parable: How Fiction by Jesus Became Fiction about Jesus" as influences on his thinking. ( )
  alanteder | Apr 13, 2017 |
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